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Shivdeep Grewal

4 Democratic theory Chapters 2 and 3 were written from what Habermas (1995: 204) refers to as the ‘external perspective of an observer’. Like the state and the market, the lifeworld is seen from outside, attention given to its role in the maintenance of social life. Bringing the reconstruction of social modernity at the level of the EU to a close, the present chapter looks at a second, ‘internal’, perspective posited by Habermas (1995: 204). The lifeworld’s encounters with administrative and economic systems are opened up for analysis. At their worst, such

in Habermas and European Integration (second edition)
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Shivdeep Grewal

Conceptions of democracy can be discerned in Jürgen Habermas's writings on Europe. In an article on the Constitution written before 9/11, the sluice gate model of Between Facts and Norms (BFN) was suggested. Habermas's favourable account of the mass protests in Europe against military intervention in Iraq recalled the siege model of The Theory of Communicative Action (TCA), with civil society exerting an influence on the state from outside. One outcome of lifeworld colonisation identified by Habermas is the 'withdrawal of legitimation' from the state. It is widely cited as a consequence of the European Union's 'democratic deficit', evident in the widespread decline of the 'permissive consensus', a perception of European integration as an innocuously technical, rather than political, endeavour. Other signs of lifeworld colonisation/the democratic deficit can be discerned in the spheres of personal and cultural life.

in Habermas and European integration
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Violence, alterity, community
Editor: Stella Gaon

This book explores the political implications of violence and alterity (radical difference) for the practice of democracy, and reformulates the possibility of community that democracy is said to entail. Most significantly, contributors intervene in traditional democratic theory by contesting the widely held assumption that increased inclusion, tolerance and cultural recognition are democracy's sufficient conditions. Rather than simply inquiring how best to expand the ‘demos’, they investigate how claims to self-determination, identity and sovereignty are a problem for democracy, and how, paradoxically, alterity may be its greatest strength. Contributions include an appeal to the tension between fear and love in the face of anti-Semitism in Poland, injunctions to rethink the identity-difference binary and the ideal of ‘mutual recognition’ that dominate liberal-democratic thought, critiques of the canonical ‘we’ which constitutes the democratic community, and a call for an ethics and a politics of ‘dissensus’ in democratic struggles against racist and sexist oppression. The contributors mobilise some of the most powerful critical insights emerging across the social sciences and humanities—from anthropology, sociology, critical legal studies, Marxism, psychoanalysis, critical race theory and post-colonial studies—to reconsider the meaning and the possibility of ‘democracy’ in the face of its contemporary crisis.

The politics of consultation in Britain and Australia
Author: Rob Manwaring

This book attempts to understand how two sister centre-left parties, the British Labour Party and the Australian Labor Party (ALP), have sought to adapt to the modern era and effect changes. It identifies and examines a range of drivers for Labour's desire to experiment and find new forms of citizen engagement. Linked to the influence of the New Social Democracy (NSD) is the lingering legacy of the new public management (NPM) reforms implemented in the public sectors in both countries. For Labour, democratic renewal is an attempt to secure wider legitimacy in neoliberal settings; similarly, the NSD is also linked to the debates about the perceived shift from government to governance. The NSD has attempted to respond to these debates and in Britain a concerted effort has been made to reformulate the role of the state and, by extension, civil society. The book examines how far the NSD has influenced Labour governments in Britain and Australia. It establishes Labour's interest in democratic renewal, specifically, the role of political participation and civic engagement in the wider context of democratic theory. Given that the NSD calls for an 'active citizenry', this is important. A central motif of democratic theory is an ambivalence about the role of political participation in a modern liberal democratic polity. The book explores how far New Social Democratic governments in Britain and Australia have been successful in seeking to link new forms of public dialogue to existing democratic decision-making processes in the modern western world.

Open Access (free)
Moving beyond boundaries
Author: Dana Mills

Dance has always been a method of self- expression for human beings. This book examines the political power of dance and especially its transgressive potential. Focusing on readings of dance pioneers Isadora Duncan and Martha Graham, Gumboots dancers in the gold mines of South Africa, the One Billion Rising movement using dance to protest against gendered violence, dabkeh in Palestine and dance as protest against human rights abuse in Israel, the Sun Dance within the Native American Crow tribe, the book focuses on the political power of dance and moments in which dance transgresses politics articulated in words. Thus the book seeks ways in which reading political dance as interruption unsettles conceptions of politics and dance.

Social and cultural modernity beyond the nation-state
Author: Shivdeep Grewal

From its conception to the referenda of 2005 where it met its end, German philosopher Jürgen Habermas wrote in support of the European Constitution. This book is the first in-depth account of his project. Emphasis is placed on the conception of the European Union (EU) that informed his political prescriptions. This study engages with Habermas's thought as a totality, though attention is focussed on themes such as communicative rationality that began to surface in the 1970s. The first part of the book considers the unfolding of 'social modernity' at the level of the EU. Among the subjects covered are Habermas's concept of juridification, the latter's affinities with integration theories such as neofunctionalism and the application of Habermas's democratic theory to the EU. The second part addresses 'cultural modernity' in Europe - 'Europessimism' is argued to be a subset of the broader cultural pessimism that has assailed the project of modernity in recent decades with renewed intensity in the wake of 9/11. The final section looks at the conceptual landscape of the Constitutional Convention. The groundbreaking work of E. O. Eriksen, E. F. Fossum and others provides the most developed Habermasian account of the EU to date. Juridification is put forward as a metatheory of social modernity, and existing approaches from the corpus of European integration theory are drawn. Recent political theory confronts scholars of European integration with difficult questions. The social democrats who were interviewed had the opposite combination of opinions.

Power, legitimacy and the interpretation of democratic ideas

As the globalization of democracy becomes increasingly palpable, the political obstacles to its achievement become overshadowed by more vexing questions concerning the very nature of democracy itself. This book examines some of the philosophical and theoretical debates underlying the 'democratic project' which increasingly dominates the field of comparative development. The first concern presented is normative and epistemological: as democracy becomes widely accepted as the political currency of legitimacy, the more broadly it is defined. The second issue examined refers to the claims being made regarding how best to secure a democratic system in developing states. The book shows how 'democracy' has quickly become, both academically and politically, all things to all people: it represents a philosophical ideal, a political strategy, and an instrument of economic well-being. It looks at some of the philosophical debates underlying democracy in order to explain why it has evolved into such an ambiguous concept. The book surveys the arguments supporting the expansion of 'democracy' from its individualistic orientations to an account more able to accommodate the concerns and aspirations of groups. Critical assessments of these new trends in democratic theory are presented. The book examines the political contexts within which debates about democratization are centred. A discussion on the claim that a robust democracy depends upon our ability to 'strengthen civil society', follows. The book situates the debate over democracy and development more closely by examining the political context surrounding the inflation of democratic meaning. It examines the consequences of the globalization of democratic norms.

Rob Manwaring

of what it is that a democracy and a citizen are supposed to do in a political system driven by NSD. To understand the attempts by New Labour and the ALP to create ‘active citizens’, we need to explore the wider debates about the role of democracy and the challenges facing Understanding political participation 31 attempts to institute the ‘democratisation of democracy’. This chapter examines the oscillating place of participation in democratic theory and traces how social democratic thinking seeks to reconfigure citizenship. The chapter examines the limits of

in The search for democratic renewal
Abstract only
Rob Manwaring

context of democratic theory. Given that the New Social Democracy calls for an ‘active citizenry’, this is important. A c­entral motif of democratic theory is an ambivalence about the role of political participation in a modern liberal democratic polity. While Schumpeter offers a ‘realist’ account, with a strident appeal for minimal political participation, more ‘participatory’ accounts, usually drawing from Rousseau, such as Carole Pateman’s, argue for a much deeper engagement of the citizenry. The more recent ‘deliberative’ turn in democratic theory at one level seeks

in The search for democratic renewal
Open Access (free)
David Owen

arguably the main contemporary challenge to democratic theory and practice in the era of globalisation. 1 A minimal view of democracy Perhaps the best known minimal view of democracy is that advanced by Schumpeter as ‘a system in which rulers are selected by competitive elections’, 3 where such elections are held on a regular basis and under conditions of universal suffrage. The main question that arises here is

in Political concepts